Chicago Alderman Gilbert Villegas aims to remove Trump name from tower

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Thursday, January 14, 2021
Chicago alderman aims to remove Trump name from tower
Chicago Ald. Gilbert Villegas hopes to remove President Trump's name from the riverfront building.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- There has been a push to remove President Donald Trump's name from the Chicago skyline after he was impeached a second time on Wednesday.

The effort to bring down the Trump sign from the Trump Tower comes as New York City said it would cut ties with the Trump Organization and remove the name from an ice rink, a golf course and a carousel that the city owns but is operated by the Trump Organization.

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Letters that are 20 feet 6 inches tall appear on the side of Chicago skyline building in a high profile riverfront location.

Pulitzer Prize-winning architecture critic Blair Kamin has always been against the sign, but he is especially against it after last week's riots at the U.S. Capitol.

"Now, in addition to being an eye sore, it's a symbol of a large, impossible-to-miss symbol of a president who incited a riot against the Capitol," Kamin said.

Several years ago, city leaders tried to get the Trump name removed from the building. They found it was legally protected by the first amendment, but now Alderman Gilbert Villegas, a retired marine, is trying again based on President Trump's impeachment hearings.

"It was very sickening to see, and we got to send a message," Villegas said.

Villegas said there is a great deal of support for the measure. Alderman Brendan Reilly is a co-sponsor and does not want the sign in his 42nd Ward.

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"I'm tired of the daily reminder of the carnage this man has inflicted upon our country. He's made it clear that has no love for Chicago and routinely disparages our city and people," Reilly said in a statement.

The alderman also sponsored a second ordinance that keeps the city from doing business with anyone convicted of treason or insurrection.

"This president has committed an unlawful act. He has disgraced himself. He will no longer profit from his relationship with New York City. We will not allow it," said New York's Mayor Bill DeBlasio.